The Netflix Nigerian film Blood Vessel revolves around six strangers running away from their reality only to end up in a worse situation. Oyin and Abbey were madly in love, but Oyin’s father, Ebiye, was against their relationship because Abbey was of a ‘mixed blood’ race. After being married for five years, Abbey’s mother decided to bring an Igbo woman to have a child with her husband. After the child was born, her husband’s family refused to accept him, and from then on, Abbey was cursed for being the son of an ‘unwanted woman.’
Tekena and Olotu left their house in search of a better future, but they ended up getting stranded in Nembe. Meanwhile, Boma and Degbe were involved in the killing of a soldier. They were protesting against the environmental catastrophe as a result of the oil spillage. They wanted to start a fire, but the unexpected death of the soldier resulted in more chaos, and Boma and Degbe had no choice but to flee town.
Plot Summary: What Is The Film About?
Oyin was held hostage by her father when he found out that she was pregnant. He wanted her to abort the baby, but she was against it. Ebiye was prepared to kill Abbey for the sake of his daughter, but thankfully, Abbey was not at home when he visited. Abbey was surprised to see Oyin locked in her house. She explained the whole situation to Abbey, and he managed to help her escape. With soldiers attacking common people, Oyin and Abbey had no choice but to hide away. Abbey eventually found out that Ebiye had informed the army that he was the leader of the gang that killed the soldier. Abbey’s sister brought him money and essentials and asked him to run away with Oyin if he wanted to survive.
Tekena and Olotu got stuck during the public outrage in Nembe, and they met Oyin and Abbey while hiding from the soldiers. Boma and Degbe were also running away, and it became obvious to the rest that they were the ones involved in the killing. While initially Abbey was hostile towards them, they eventually calmed down after realizing that they were fighting for their people. The oil company had destroyed their land and killed the people of their community—Boma and Degbe were among the many who refused to bow down to the atrocities. Olotu had made an arrangement with Mr. Perekemi, a sailor who promised to help them escape from the country. Boma knew the sailor, and he was hopeful that maybe Mr. P would allow the rest of them safe passage to travel abroad as well. After making payment to Mr. P, he helped the group of six settle in a hidden location on the ship. While the place was clumsy and had no ventilation, they were ready to bear with it in the hopes of leaving the country.
Mr. P promised to bring them food every day at dinnertime. The group finally felt hopeful, but they were unaware that Mr. P suffered from a health issue and was taken off the ship. Igor, a vicious mobster who was traveling with his sister, was the owner of the ship. The Ghanaian Navy soon stopped the ship, and Igor tried to bribe the commander, but he refused to budge. The commander announced that the ship was under arrest unless Igor could provide a receipt for the cargo he was transporting. Igor was transporting stolen crude, and the commander had information on it. Even though we do not see the killing of the commander, it is evident considering the ship kept on sailing even after his announcement. The six secret passengers were glad when the ship started sailing, but they needed food to continue surviving.
What happened to the six strangers?
Degbe stepped out to bring some food for their fellow passengers. He found the kitchen and was devouring the food when a woman came across him. She screamed and raised an alarm upon seeing the stranger on the ship. Degbe was eventually captured, and Igor offered him food to eat. Degbe could not have predicted Igor’s evil motive, and he ended up confessing the truth. Igor’s men found the rest of them and brought them to the boss. Igor invited them to sit at the dining table, and Degbe encouraged them to do so. Igor offered them food and, in exchange, demanded honesty.
After finding out that Mr. Perekemi was involved, Igor contacted him, and he denied all allegations. Igor doubted them for being spies, and Degbe expressed his doubt about the two brothers, Tekena and Olotu. Abbey was the only one not present at the table because he had sneaked out to find medicine for Oyin. The five passengers got into a loud argument to prove their innocence, and Igor ended up shooting Degbe. The rest were taken hostage and kept locked in a room. Seeing the right opportunity, Boma grabbed hold of Igor’s sister and held a knife to her throat. Abbey noticed that a man was pointing his gun at Boma from behind, and he attacked the man. In a moment of chaos, Igor’s sister stabbed Boma in the leg, and he ended up slashing her throat. Watching his sister die right in front of his eyes left Igor wanting nothing but vengeance.
Boma was caught, and Igor ended up skinning him for entertainment. Igor asked the two brothers to fight for survival. Olotu refused to participate, but Tekena was ready to do anything for survival. Olotu chose to stab himself to let his brother survive, but Igor was a ruthless man. He shot Tekena and dropped him in the ocean. Igor held Oyin at gunpoint and asked Abbey to show up. Abbey begged for Igor to spare Oyin’s life, but the gangster did not care. Oyin was shot to death, and Abbey watched helplessly. Oyin knew that killing and consuming the Python would bring curses upon them, and she was also aware that if she ever married a man or gave birth to a child, she would die, yet she chose to fall in love with Abbey because it was beyond all rationality. Oyin did not fear death, and she loved Abbey with all her heart.
How did Abbey make his way out of the ship?
Abbey was brought into the skinning room just like Boma. Igor’s assistant continued to torture him, and suddenly, to Abbey’s surprise, Boma attacked the man. Igor’s henchman died at the end of Blood Vessel, thanks to Boma. He, too, succumbed to his injuries, but before dying, Boma advised Abbey to keep on fighting till his last breath. Abbey gathered strength and got on his feet. He grabbed a machine gun and shot at his threat. When Igor found Abbey, he assumed that the young man had no strength left in him. Abbey was once again dragged to Igor’s favorite room, and just when the gangster was about to work on Abbey’s body, he went missing. Abbey leaked the preservative gas, and in the cloudy room, he attacked Igor.
During Blood Vessel‘s ending, we saw Abbey pointing a gun at Igor. He had broken the confidence of the gangster, and he decided to punish him just like he punished the ones he loved. Abbey shot Igor in his legs and then his head and avenged the death of Oyin. Abbey was finally able to leave the ship, and before he did so, he grabbed all the cash he found on board. He returned home to Nambe and handed over the money to the families of the deceased. When he broke the news of Oyin’s death to her father, he was in complete disbelief. Ebiye blamed Abbey for the incident and was determined to destroy him completely. In the end, we find out that Tekena survived even after Igor shot him in the leg and flung him into the ocean. Abbey was glad to see him, and the two could finally talk about the horror they had to live through.
With the money that Abbey had, he decided to move to Lagos. Just when Abbey thought he could start his life afresh, Ebiye pointed his gun at Abbey’s family. Ebiye intended to murder Abbey, but maybe he will end up killing his mother and sister. With Abbey gone, they were the only ones left, and Ebiye might kill them to avenge the death of his daughter. He may end up traveling to Lagos simply because of his maddening rage. If his bullet hits Abbey, he will be relieved of the pain of living without the love of his life, Oyin, and if he survives, he will get another chance at life and start over again. By leaving it open-ended, we are allowed to imagine the fate of our protagonist. Even if Abbey survives, it will be extremely difficult for him to get over the nightmare he had to live through. Blood Vessel also comments on the socio-political condition of Nambe, where the indigenous population is on the streets fighting for their survival while gangsters such as Igor take advantage of the situation. Even if the youth dream of a future, reality makes it impossible for them to live the life they imagine.